The title is a phrase I heard at the panel on Optimizing Learning, given by the Aspen Institute at this year’s South by Southwest education conference (SXSWedu) held March 3-6 in Austin, Texas. It was also one of many themes I heard in other sessions and in many conversations we had around the conference and in our Social Media Lounge where, by the last day of the meeting, overstimulated educators and entrepreneurs filled the comfortable bean bag chairs while they awaited the closing sessions and barbecue lunch.
As learning becomes more and more complex and digital tools proliferate, there is more and more to stitch together. Schools are making procurement decisions based on many conflicting (or sometimes symmetrical) needs. Students’ needs are more and more diverse. The pace of change is faster than ever.
In her SXSWedu appearance, Texas State Senator Wendy Davis called for rewarding innovation and collaboration. It’s expected that she will be outlining a funding mechanism designed to support collaboration and innovation in Texas schools.
A promising model for Texas and other states wishing to design such a mechanism might be the Ohio Straight A Fund Grants 2015. Clearly designed to foster innovation and collaboration, the grant requirements call for:
• Increased student achievement
• Spending reduction in the five-year forecast or positive performance on other fiscal measures established by the Straight A Fund governing board
• Utilization of a greater share of resources in the classroom
• Use of shared services delivery model that demonstrates increased efficiency and effectiveness, long-term sustainability and scalability
We have studied the grant application and believe that high levels of collaboration among multiple partners, such as WIN Learning and Scantron, can best meet the requirements of these grants. Read more here.
If you are an educator in Ohio and are interested in learning more about how Compass Learning, along with our partners, can provide the type of innovative solution required for The Straight A Fund, please join us on one of our upcoming webinars taking place March 12th, 18th and 20th. Click here to register and select your preferred event date.